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#476430 - 07/10/12 09:59 PM Interesting Conversation with a Christian Today
Labyrinthine Offline

CoS Member

Registered: 02/05/12
Posts: 541
Loc: America

Today at work, during a break and at closing, I talked to a co-worker of mine who I've known through years through organizations outside of work. (I hesitate to call him a friend; I'll say trustworthy friendly acquaintance though)

He's Christian, this Protestant sect that holds the sabbath to be on Saturday I don't recall the name of them...

Anyway we had a good, friendly, objective discussion of religion, the Bible, and how most Christians nowadays don't actually read the damn thing or look into it anymore than what their pastors/priests tell them.

He and I agreed on how foolish that was, and that it made all Christians look ignorant of their own religion.

He doesn't know I'm a Satanist or even an atheist; I told him I'm a deist who respects all religions. (Best to tell people what they want to hear.)

The most interesting part of the conversation was getting to the topic of atheists.

Without knowing a thing about Satanism, he, a Christian, explained the idea of "I-theism" perfectly: he said that atheists aren't REALLY atheists, since they still claim a code of morality, at least all the ones he's met.

That code of morality must come from a "God," a lawgiver, the center of the universe to make that objective morality. Therefore, the atheist is actually holding himself to be his own God, as Lucifer tried to do.

He was greatly amused by this, that atheists aren't REALLY atheists after all. I told him the term "I-theist" and he loved it even more and said he would use it next time he debates with an atheist.

This made me think immediately; this is why I'm a Satanist: I'm religiously embracing my role as Judge of my universe, to me, I am God. It's much more fulfilling and positive than when I thought of myself as a simple humanist atheist.

If you don't see any God consciously, you'll make one for yourself, or at least someone will make one for you.

So just make your God be...you!

Anyway the point is how awesomely hilarious it was that a Christian and a Satanist could so strongly agree on something when our life philosophies are so opposite.

And a good reminder as to why I am not merely an atheist, but a Satanist.

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#476476 - 07/11/12 08:28 AM Re: Interesting Conversation with a Christian Today [Re: Labyrinthine]
Mason_Rust Offline

CoS Member

Registered: 08/25/02
Posts: 1780
Loc: Michigan, USA
The idea of a morality existing for atheists can actually be used to show that even those who believe in the Christian version of God have a bit of atheism in them.

In Penn Jilette's book "God, No!" he brings up the story of Abraham about to murder his son because God tells him too. Penn poses the question to the reader that if God came to you (no matter what God you believe in) and told you to kill one of your children, would you do it? He argues that if you answer "No," then you might already be an atheist.

To say "No" would show that you believe that a morality exists beyond that of God. A concept of right and wrong exists without God being necessary to dictate what it is, and that God himself/herself (whatever) could be on the side of wrong. If someone claims to be a true believer, then even if hypothetical questions are posed to them where their God asks them to do horrible things, that those horrible things are "right" because all "right" comes from God and his will.

To believe that morality can exist without a god dictating it is not a belief in god, it is a belief in morality, which is a completely different thing.

Now, the Satanist (and I suppose other intelligent people) can take this further and recognize that right and wrong are concepts that we define for ourselves. "Good is what I like, evil is what I don't like." While we are often on the same page about many issues, such as it would be very wrong to intentionally steal from someone, or that it is a good thing to indulge your desires, there are many avenues in life where we must decide our own moral views on issues that might wind up being different from individual to individual. For example, if some Bible thumpers knock on your door, is it wrong to treat them rudely and be hostile towards them? Some might say, no, it is completely justified and their insane religion deserves every sharp response it gets. Others might say, it's somewhat wrong, as society should maintain an air of politeness. They have the right in the US to ask if you want to hear about Jesus, and you have the right to say no, and that should be the end of it. In either case, I think most Satanists would recognize that both responses are "right" as such a gray area is up to the individual, and whatever that individual decides is their business. No moral code is broken, as moral codes are created by the individual.

I would recommend purchasing Penn's book. It's a quick, entertaining read, and could spur some interesting continuations of your conversation with your friendly acquaintance. I can't say I agree with every view that Penn takes in his book (I don't think we should love and respect everyone unconditionally) but he has some interesting ideas and humorous stories.
_________________________
"Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence."
-Carl Sagan

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#476482 - 07/11/12 09:49 AM Re: Interesting Conversation with a Christian Today [Re: Mason_Rust]
Wolfe
Unregistered


I recently spent time in a christian-based hospital. Every morning the chaplain would come into my room, "God bless you," and all that. I just said "thank you," each time and let him go on his way. I certainly wasn't about to get into a theological discussion with this guy or attack his beliefs. Both would've been an utter waste of time. Best just to be polite and be done with it.

I am proud to say that I caught the preacher man looking somewhat uneasy at the sight of the Baphomet pentagram tattoed on my arm. That made me feel loads better!

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#476509 - 07/11/12 08:52 PM Re: Interesting Conversation with a Christian Today [Re: Labyrinthine]
TrojZyr Offline
CoS Witch

Registered: 07/25/01
Posts: 12990
Loc: The Solid State
Your acquaintance is probably a Seventh-Day Adventist. Nice folks; believe lost souls are destroyed in Hell, rather than tortured for all eternity.

I'd certainly argue with his notion that atheists just "make up" their morals, though--at least, no more and no less than Jews, atheists, Satanists, or Christians make up theirs!

We often come to different conclusions, but the fact that six-month-old infants and a wide array of animals both appear to possess an innate sense of fairness and kindness indicates that moral sense has a common, shared origin. It's not all arbitrary and random.

Oh, and I'm reminded of this article:

Why Are Believers Willfully Ignorant About Atheists
_________________________
"Gentlemen, the verdict is guilty, on all ten counts of first-degree stupidity. The penalty phase will now begin."--Divine, "Pink Flamingos."

"The strong rule the weak, and the cunning rule over all." HS!

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